Today is the happiest day of your life. You’re holding your newborn healthy baby in your arms. While the baby is in perfect health, you’re going to be experiencing a few medical problems.
We don’t mean serious health problems we assure you. They will be a little bit out of your control though. We’re talking about potentially embarrassing bladder issues.
The good news is that there are pelvic floor exercises such as Kegels and squats that will help you strengthen your bladder and bowels. You’ll need to talk to your doctor before you start a regimen to make sure you’re good to start. Once you get the okay, consider trying out one of the exercises on this list.
After having a baby, you might start to experience bladder leakage if you so much as laugh, sneeze, or cough. If you’re having this problem, you can follow this guide for more advice and also do some Kegels.
To do Kegels you first have to figure out where your pelvic floor muscles are. The best way to do this is to pretend to hold your urination midstream. Once you’ve located them, contract them and hold for around 5 seconds.
Once the 5 seconds are up, release them for another 5. Repeat this process ten times. For the best results, do Kegels three times every day.
Squats work out more than your pelvic floor. You’ll also strengthen up your hamstrings, glutes, and quadriceps. You can do squats either with a barbell or without.
Before you get started, you’ve got to make sure you’re in the right stance. Stand up straight and spread your feet a little bit wider than shoulder-length apart. Your toes should be pointed out.
If you’ve elected to use a barbell keep it comfortably rested behind your neck. Now you’re ready to do a squat. Bend your knees and push your buttocks out as if you’re about to take a seat.
Your thighs need to be parallel to the ground so you might drop a little further then if you were going to sit in a chair. Go back up to an upright position. Repeat this 15 more times.
The bridge is a fairly simple exercise to do and it will work your pelvic floor, glutes, and hamstrings. Despite the fact that it’s not hard to do there is a right and wrong way to do a bridge if you want to see the best results.
Lay on your back on the ground and bend your knees up to a 90-degree angle. Your feet and palms should be flat against the floor. Use your heels to raise off the ground.
Once your body is forming a straight slope from head to feet, hold your position for a few seconds before you gently lower yourself back down.
4. Split Tabletop
While you’re still on the floor from the bridge you can go into the split tabletop exercise. It works your pelvic floor, abs, and hips. With your legs still together, bend your knees back until your shins are parallel to the floor.
Slowly spread your legs apart until it stops being comfortable and then bring them back together. Keep in mind that this exercise, like many others, is much better done on an exercise mat.
5. Bird Dog
The bird dog works out about all your big muscles at once including your pelvic floor, glutes, abs, hips, and back. To begin, get down on all fours on the floor. Be sure to keep your back as straight as possible.
Secure your core and move your shoulder blades down a little. Next, you’re going to lift your right leg and left arm at the exact same time. Be sure that neither go higher than your head and hold them for about two seconds.
Bring them back down and then repeat the same process with your left leg and right arm.
6. Squeeze and Release
The squeeze and release exercise method is sort of like a Kegel except you’re not holding it in. Get in a comfortable position and picture those pelvic floor muscles in your head.
Squeeze them as much as you can and then release without holding them. Give yourself a few seconds to rest between each one. Repeat this process at least twice a day.
7. Jumping Jacks
We know you don’t even want to think about jumping postpartum. It will be uncomfortable but it will help you build up strength in your pelvic floor muscles. Don’t worry, you don’t have to do huge jumps in the air to see results.
Stand up straight and with your knees slightly bent and do small jumps in the air. Spread your legs about shoulder length apart as you jump and lift your arms above your head.
This is the perfect exercise to do if you want to do something a little more rigorous then the stretches we’ve mentioned so far.
8. Sit on an Exercise Ball
Sitting on an exercise ball can help you engage your pelvic floor and any other muscles that were weakened during childbirth. For the best results, make sure that when you sit down on the ball you keep your pelvis and torso aligned.
If you want, you can also do wall sits with the ball. Place the ball between your lower back and the wall. Lower your body down slightly as if you’re doing a squat while pushing back against the ball.
Straighten yourself back up while still pressing against the ball and repeat 10 to 15 times.
Easy Pelvic Floor Exercises for Postpartum Women
Childbirth is a beautiful and magical process but with it comes a few health issues for mom in the bladder department. The good news is that there are plenty of pelvic floor exercises you can do postpartum that can strengthen those muscles back up. Get the okay from your doctor and try out some of the easy workouts that you’ve read here.
Did you get something out of the stretches and exercises on this list? Check out our blog daily for even more articles like this one.